The scented fabric sheet makes your shirts and socks smell flowery fresh and clean. That plug-in air freshener fills your home with inviting fragrances of apple and cinnamon or a country garden.
But those common household items are potentially exposing your family and friends to dangerous chemicals, a University of Washington study has found.
The problem is simple. These chemicals are legally considered "external" even though you breath them into your lungs, sinuses and potentially absorb them through your skin. Because they are legally "external" companies are free from legal requirements to list all ingredients or to test the chemicals for toxicity. There are some 400 different artificial scent chemicals, of which less than 50 have actually been tested for toxic effects on humans.